Opening Remarks by Reed Aeschliman, USAID Deputy Mission Director, at the C4C Awarding Rites

Thursday, May 15, 2014

[As Prepared]

Health Secretary Ona, Press Secretary Coloma
Partners from the national and sub-national government
Graduates of the first batch of Communications for Communicators School
Ladies and gentlemen

Magandang hapon sa inyong lahat!

On behalf of the U.S. Embassy-Manila’s United States International Agency for Development (USAID), I thank you for the privilege to join you today as we recognize the accomplishment of the first batch of C4C graduates.

USAID supports the Philippine Government’s work in enhancing the public sector’s communication expertise to improve the health of the nation, especially in the areas of maternal and child health, family planning, TB, and HIV/AIDS.

C4C is the Department of Health’s and USAID’s approach to raise the standards of communication skills among public health providers. C4C was implemented by USAID’s CHANGE project, which focuses on strategic and sustainable communications to reduce maternal and child deaths and TB prevalence.

C4C is a six-month blended learning curriculum that equips scholars with the ability to think strategically in communications, mobilize resources for local communication activities, and become transformative leaders.

I commend the creative team of Campaigns and Grey for doing a great job. I appreciate the partnership forged with two distinguished academic institutions: John Hopkins University Center for Communications Programs and the Ateneo de Manila University - School of Government.

Allow me to recognize the leadership of the DOH, POPCOM, PhilHealth and the local government units for their valuable support to their respective C4C scholars. Today, 86 stellar graduates have completed C4C: 48 are from Luzon, 30 from Mindanao, and 27 from the Visayas.

This was no ordinary training. They utilized C4C’s digital portal. They received face-to-face mentoring from C4C faculty. Most importantly, they applied their learning by designing and implementing their own communication projects. The graduates standing before you today implemented their projects in small, manageable areas. Their projects are interesting and the results have been so promising, that we hope to see them expanded to create more demand for health services and contribute to better health outcomes in the country.

This is just the first batch of C4C graduates. We plan to have C4C School live beyond USAID’s CHANGE project as we envision it to become a permanent course in an academic institution.

C4C and the CHANGE project is just on part of USAID’s health initiative. We know that for the country to prosper, all Filipinos must have equitable access to health services; that to advance livelihood, we must protect lives. To the C4C graduates, you are playing a critical role in achieving this shared vision between the US Government and the Government of the Philippines.

Thank you and Mabuhay!

Issuing Country